Dr. Richard Rothman: Lessons Learned from Nearly 50 Years in Practice

    The death last weekend of pioneering joint replacement surgeon Richard H. Rothman, MD, PhD, had the ICJR team reminiscing about presentations he had done at our meetings.

    The one that stood out for us was a talk he gave in 2016 at our 5th Annual Direct Anterior Approach Hip Course. It was the meeting’s keynote address, and it featured Dr. Rothman discussing the lessons he had learned from his long and successful career in orthopaedic surgery. He shared with attendees his pearls for practice – from recruiting and retaining talent to building a financially stable practice, from exercising caution with new technology to finding a work-life balance – and reminded them that as joint replacement surgeons, they work in “the best profession in the world,” one that he said he had never regretted undertaking.

    Dr. Rothman was one of the first surgeons in the US to perform total hip arthroplasty. He was a protege of Dr. John Charnley, traveling to England in 1969 to learn how to perform the procedure from its pioneer. Over the course of a nearly 50-year career, Dr. Rothman performed more than 50,000 hip and knee replacement surgeries.

    Dr. Rothman had performed his final knee replacement procedure in mid-May and officially retired as a surgeon. He had planned to continue seeing patients before and after surgery, mentoring colleagues, teaching, and working on mergers and acquisitions for The Rothman Institute, which he founded in the 1970s.

    Click the image above to hear what Dr. Rothman had to say about his career as a joint replacement surgeon.